Focus on AARP Advocacy in South Carolina
AARP South Carolina works hard to show where it counts as a fierce advocate for the over-50s fighting for the issues you care about right here in South Carolina. We wanted to take a moment to share with you some of the advocacy work we will be doing in 2022.
AARP South Carolina continues to advocate for a voluntary way for South Carolinas to save at work.
Palmetto State residents have among the least 401,000 retirement savings in the nation. This means that large sectors of our workforce are not adequately prepared for retirement. With average Social Security checks in South Carolina around $1,300 a month, relying solely on Social Security for retirement won’t be a lasting solution. Yet hundreds of thousands in South Carolina, at all income levels, do not have access to a workplace savings program. Retirement should be enjoyed, not feared. That’s why we advocate this sensible approach to helping people save. Learn more here.
“The time is always right to do what is right.” And the time has come.
Did you know that South Carolina is one of only three states without a hate crime law? As we approach MLK Day, it is worth remembering that the Reverend Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “There is always a time to do what is right.” We believe the time has come to enact meaningful legislation to guard against hate crimes. It’s time to send a signal to the rest of the country that South Carolinians cherish the diversity of our people and believe that our state benefits and prospers from it.
Thousands of South Carolina workers are one economic downturn from losing health care coverage. This needs to be settled.
Investing in access to health care coverage for those earning less than $18,000 a year is a major long-term priority for AARP in South Carolina. It’s the right thing to do and it has overwhelming support across the ideological spectrum. According to a recent AARP survey of registered voters over 50 in South Carolina, eight in 10 support a system of access to health care coverage in Palmetto State, including 69% Republicans. . Learn more about the survey here. A safety net that guarantees access to health care coverage for all can improve health outcomes for South Carolina residents, which is good for the economy. Learn more on the South Carolina Institute of Medicine and Public Health report on health outcomes associated with access to health coverage here.
AARP South Carolina advocates for South Carolina to continue building 21st century infrastructure.
The COVID-19 pandemic has shown that those without high-speed internet access are extremely disadvantaged. In fact, they are left behind and, in the case of many seniors, isolated. The expansion of high-speed internet helps sustain and open up our rural economies and is akin to the development of basic infrastructure like road networks. Setting aside more funds to expand broadband internet, especially in rural areas, is something Republicans, Democrats and independents can all agree on. AARP South Carolina will continue to advocate for the
We all need a little help sometimes. But loans must be fair. That’s why AARP South Carolina supports a fair lending law.
AARP SC is on the steering committee of the SC Fair Lending Alliance, which is working to introduce a state bill to cap interest rates at 36% for consumer loans (loans payday loans, car title loans, etc.). lenders in South Carolina is that they must file their interest rate with the state. The highest rate ever recorded is currently 800%. This push will:
- Bring rates in line with the Federal Military Loans Act
- Provide greater protection for seniors on fixed incomes who may need high-cost loans
- Provide increased protection to communities of color who are disproportionately targeted by high-cost lenders and the resulting cycle of debt
Some of our other advocacy focuses in 2022 are:
- We will advocate for the development of a national registry for Parkinson’s disease.
- We support a nurse practitioner loan forgiveness bill to increase the number of healthcare providers in South Carolina.
- We are also supporting a nurse anesthetist bill to give practitioners more autonomy and help reduce health care costs and increase the number of providers.
- AARP has long sought to reduce X-ray drug prices and we will advocate for an affordable drug bill here in South Carolina.
- Home and Community Services (HBCS) is an important part of South Carolina’s health care system, especially for older residents. We will push for an increase in personal care rates.